When I decided to make this record “The Spider Queen,” I had a message and a mission, and I knew I needed an open-minded producer. I reached out to my friend, Lindsay Schoolcraft, and told her what I wanted to do…she told me I needed to meet Cody.
Cody Johnstone is a Canadian musician/producer/awesome bread maker who immediately was on board with my idea for “blues metal.” It’s an amalgam of the blues-based rock of my early solo efforts and symphonic metal, a category that has never fit my sound EXACTLY, but a community that has always supported me, afforded me opportunities, and shown up for me. I wanted to create something that was lyrically and vocally meaningful, while also cleverly orchestrated and gritty.
On a thematic level, The Spider Queen reflects who I am now, an adult woman whose ideals and goals are different than they were at 25. I’m deeply invested in making music that is truthful and artistically satisfying, rather than trendy or “marketable.” And I am committed to stamping out the notion of ‘competition’ between musicians, particularly young women. Competition is the enemy of art, and right now, we need ART.
When I was pondering all of this, a song by Melissa Etheridge kept playing in my mind. It’s a song in which I always felt she was toying with the edges of hard rock/metal, and the lyrics could not be more in line with where I am as an artist.
So, even though it seemed counterintuitive, we decided to kick off The Spider Queen with cover- a “blues metal” version of that song, ‘The Different.’ I contacted my friend Danny B, a metal musician and engineer who could mix front of house sound in a port-o-potty and make it sound like an arena, and hired him to master it.
‘The Different’….a theme indeed. After listening to some excellent PR advice, I decided to try something new with the video clip for this song. Why not, instead of making a standard, traditional full-screen piece that will only be visually complete on YouTube (forcing me to drive traffic to it with a link), make a piece that is explicitly intended for the vertical apps, TikTok, Instagram reels, and YouTube reels? Sure, it’s unconventional, but isn’t that the point?
And so we did. Filmmaker/actor/husband extraordinaire, Sean McHugh, shot the footage and, after I sweated out a first cut, went back and recut it to be 1000X better.
I posted the Spotify pre-save link and was delighted to see it received more interaction than any song I’ve released so far! For that, I thank you. ❤
Now, in two days, the experiment launches, and I am excited to share this journey with all of you. In place of the usual press release, I am posting this note, because I wanted to speak directly to you all: my Patrons, my friends, my fans, my family.
“Don’t you wanna know what the dark and the wild and the different know?”
On Monday, you will.
Pre-save link: https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/vklynne/the-different